Landmines

Overview

Australia was one of the original signatories of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their Destruction — also known as the Ottawa Convention, or Mine-Ban Convention — when it was opened for signature in December 1997. A total of 160 States have joined the Convention.

In December 1998, the Australian Parliament passed the Anti-personnel Mines Convention Act. This legislation gives effect under Australian law to the provisions of the Ottawa Convention. It creates offences relating to the placement, possession, development, production, acquisition, stockpiling and transfer of anti-personnel landmines by Australian citizens or members of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) or on territory under Australian jurisdiction or control.

In keeping with Australia's obligations under the Ottawa Convention, the Australian Defence Force (ADF) has destroyed Australia's stockpile of antipersonnel landmines. A limited number of mines have been retained, as allowed for under the Convention, for research and training purposes in support of Australia's work in humanitarian demining.

Universalisation

The Australian Government has contributed to international efforts to promote the universalisation of the Ottawa Convention. These efforts have focussed particularly on Australia's immediate region, the South Pacific and Southeast Asia.

Australia's Mine Action Strategy

Australia has a strong record in disarmament and international action to ban weapons that are excessively injurious or have indiscriminate effects.  Through Australia's Mine Action Strategy for 2010-2014, Australia has pledged $100 million to contribute to global efforts to reduce the threat and socioeconomic impact of landmines, cluster munitions and other explosive remnants of war.  This builds upon Australia's contribution of more than $75 million for Mine Action in 2005-2009. Australia's Mine Action Strategy is administered by AusAID.

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